Two journalists released but facing trial on sedition charges

zambiaTwo journalists who were arrested earlier this week over their coverage of a secessionist movement in the west of the country were released yesterday but are facing the possibility of a seven-year jail sentence or a fine of 1 million Zambian kwachas (about 150 euros) on sedition charges.

Mwala Kalaluka of the privately-owned daily The Post, who was arrested on 17 January, has been charged with seditious intention, while Nyambe Muyumbana, an assistant station manager of Radio Lyambai (a station based in the western city of Mongu), has been charged with publication of seditious materials.

Speaking to Reporters Without Borders by telephone, Muyumbana said no date has so far been set for his appearance in court. I have no legal representation or money to pay a lawyer to represent me in court, he said. Kalaluka had been due to appear today before a court in Kabwe (140 km north of the capital), but the police were not ready to present their case. The hearing may now be held on 23 February.

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